1 HEBREW PHILOLOGICAL NOTES (III)* Gary A. Rendsburg Cornell University Four separate studies are presented, along with an addendum to a previous article in this series. 1) The unique word MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7 means sacrifices, cognate to Phoenician Klm sacrifice. 2) Contrary to three recent proposals, the final words in Psalm 22:17 ydl går w yådîy yîrsad ;k like a lion, my hands and my feet are not to be emended. Instead, the absence of a verb in this stich is indicative of the suddenness of the evildoers attack against the psalmist. 3) The numeral 75 was expressed in a unique fashion in ancient Hebrew: it appears always as MyIoVbIv w hd ÚvImSj or MyIoVbIv w vemdj, and never in the expected reverse order hd ÚvImSjAw MyIoVbIv* or vemdj w MyIoVbIv*. 4) The numeral MyIvølVv w MˆyÅnVv MŷAtaDm two hundred two and thirty in 1 Kgs 20:15 is an exceptional formulation, expressed as hundreds + units + tens, contrary to either the usual descending order of hundreds + tens + units or the occasional ascending order of units + tens + hundreds. Apparently this formulation was used to distinguish this numeral from the form MŷÅnVv w MyIvølVv thirty and two which occurs in the same chapter (1 Kgs 20:1, 16). 5) E. A. Knauf suggested that the personal name t wr Ruth is related to the Moabite word tyr offering in Mesha Stele line 12. I responded to this proposal in HS 40 (1999): Here I note further that the reading tyr has been superceded by Andre Lemaire s reading tyh from the verb to be, thus greatly weakening Knauf s argument. 1. MyIkVlVhAm SACRIFICES IN ZECH 3:7 The word MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7 remains a puzzle to scholars. The text presents God speaking to Joshua the high priest as follows: romvvit yi;t ramvvim_tra MIa w JKElE;t yak r di;b_mia y rexsj_tra romvvi;t MÅg w yitye;b_tra NyîdD;t hd;taa_måg w hr;leadh MyîdVmOoDh NyE;b MyIkVlVhAm ÔKVl yi;tatîn w If you walk in my ways, and if you keep my charge, and also if you will judge my house, and also guard my courts, then I will give you MyIkVlVhAm among those standing. 1 * The first two installments in this series appeared in HS 40 (1999), pp , and HS 42 (2001), pp Please note the following abbreviations: HALAT = J. J. Stamm, ed., Hebräisches und aramäisches Lexikon zum Alten Testament, 5 vols. (Leiden: E. J. Brill, ); and HALOT = M. E. J. Richardson, ed., The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament, 5 vols. (Leiden: E. J. Brill, ). 1 There is some question as to whether the second stich is part of the protasis or the apodosis. Most translations take it as the latter (thus, for example, KJV, RSV, NRSV, NJPSV, etc.), but I have followed the Masora which appears to consider it as part of the former (note the placement of the atnaḥ on the word ydrexßj). In addition, the use of MÅgVw at the head of the second stich (and again later in the line) suggests that
2 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 22 Rendsburg: Philological Notes The standard dictionaries include the form MyIkVlVhAm under the word JKDlßhAm walk, journey, distance, 2 and assume that it means access. 3 The form JKDlßhAm is limited to late biblical Hebrew (Ezek 42:4; Jonah 3:3; 3:4; Neh 2:6), so in theory there is no problem in positing another occurrence of this noun in Zechariah. 4 However, several problems arise. Most importantly, the plural form of JKDlßhAm would be MyIkDlßhAm*, based on such forms as MyIlDlßoAm deeds in 1 Sam 25:3 (though in this case, no singular form is attested) and JKIyAbDrßoAm your merchandise in Ezek 27:33 (elsewhere, throughout the chapter, attested as singular JKEbDrßoAm your merchandise, in Ezek 27:9, 13, 17, 19, 25, 27, 34). 5 The form of MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7 bespeaks another interpretation, not directly related to JKDlßhAm walk, journey, distance. Based on the plural form, one would reconstruct a singular JKElVhAm*, as noted by David Qimḥi already. 6 Furthermore, even if this grammatical difficulty could be bridged, one still must make a case for an interpretation which has God bestowing access on the high priest. This is especially true if the difficult expression NyE;b hr ;leadh MyîdVmOoDh among those standing refers to the divine retinue, as per most interpreters 7 (though see further below), since typically one associates prophets with such direct access to God (notwithstanding the end of prophetic activity in the Persian period and an increase in the standing of the priesthood at this time). 8 An alternative approach takes note of the similarity between MyIkVlVhAm and the Aramaic Haphfiel participle NyIkVlVhAm in Dan 3:25; 4:34, with the same pointing, save final nun for final mem. An Aramaism in Zechariah would be perfectly acceptable. However, since a causative connotation is unbefitting here, W. A. M. Beuken argued that the Hiphfiil stem could have intransitive these words are part of the protasis. See also W. A. M. Beuken, Haggai Sacharja 1-8 (Assen: Van Gorcum, 1967), p Regardless of how this point is decided, it has only a minor impact on the main issue discussed herein. 2 To be technical, the absolute form is not attested in the Bible, but the pointing as presented is certain based on the attestations in construct (3x) and with pronominal suffix (1x). 3 BDB, p. 237 ( pl. goings, i.e., free access ); and KB, p. 499 ( Zutritt access ). See below, n. 20, for the entry in HALAT vol. 2, p. 524 = HALOT vol. 2, p See A. Hurvitz, A Linguistic Study of the Relationship Between the Priestly Source and the Book of Ezekiel (Paris: J. Gabalda, 1982), pp , with reference to our form in Zech 3:7 on p. 93, n. 118*. 5 See also J. L. Sagarin, Hebrew Noun Patterns (Mishqalim) (Atlanta, Ga.: Scholars Press, 1987), p. 71. The statement by D. L. Petersen, Haggai and Zechariah 1 8 (OTL; Philadelphia, Pa.: Westminster, 1984), p. 207, is incorrect (unless I have misunderstood Petersen): If mahl e kîm is related to the singular noun mah a lāk, the MT consonants would have to be repointed as mahlākîm. As just shown, the expected plural of JKDlßhAm is MyIkDlßhAm*. 6 W. Chomsky, ed., David K. imḥi s Hebrew Grammar (Mikhlol) (New York, N. Y.: Bloch, 1952), p See, e.g., D. L. Petersen, Haggai, p. 207; and E. H. Merrill, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi (Chicago, Ill.: Moody Press, 1994), p This problem is noted and discussed by C. L. Meyers and E. M. Meyers, Haggai, Zechariah 1-8 (AB 25B; Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1987), p. 197.
3 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 23 Rendsburg: Philological Notes meaning in this passage, yielding the sense those who walk about. 9 This interpretation comports well with that of the ancient versions (LXX, Peshitta, Vulgate, Targum). 10 In the words of James Vanderkam, It is quite possible, then, that the promise to Joshua is more indirect: he will be given individuals who have direct access to the divine presence. 11 In a stimulating article, Raphael Kutscher proposed still another solution to MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7. 12 He believed that the form of the participle is not Hiphfiil at all, but rather a variant form of the Pifiel. Kutsher supported this position by noting the presence of similar forms with a guttural consonant as the first root letter, for example, Jer 29:8 MyImVlVjAm, 2 Chr 28:23 Myîr zvoam, and 1 Chr 15:24; 2 Chr 5:12; 7:6; 13:14; 29:28 MyîrVxVjAm (always as the Qeri for the Ketiv Myrxxjm). This interpretation obviates the need for Beuken s attempt to find an intransitive meaning for the Hiphfiil, though it arrives at the same conclusion, understanding MyIkVlVhAm to mean those who walk about (thus, it is equivalent to MyIkV ;lahvm in Qoh 4:15), again as per the versions. From the view point of Hebrew grammar, Beuken s suggestion and even more so Kutscher s proposal are far preferable to that of the majority opinion described above. Still, I demur, for the plain reason that the reading offered by the versions and defended with grammatical evidence by Beuken and Kutscher does not fit the context here. It simply is not clear to me to whom those who walk about could refer. With all due respect to the scholars who have attempted such a reading, including Vanderkam s understanding noted above, this interpretation is a bit far-fetched in my view. I much prefer to read the passage as referring to God giving something tangible to Joshua. I propose that we see in the form MyIkVlVhAm a cognate to the Phoenician noun Klm sacrifice (occurring as a feminine noun tklm also), attested frequently in Punic inscriptions (e.g., KAI 61B:1, 99:2, 103:1, etc.). 13 This Phoenician noun derives from the Phoenician verb Kly go, 14 just as the Hebrew noun derives from the Hebrew verb Klh go. As is well known, terms for sacrifices often derive from verbs of motion, for example, NDÚb rdq 9 W. A. M. Beuken, Haggai-Sacharja, pp See the summary of the data in R. Hanhart, Sacharja (BKAT 14/7:3; Neukirchen: Neukirchener Verlag, n.d.), p J. C. Vanderkam, Joshua the High Priest and the Interpretation of Zechariah 3, CBQ 53 (1991): R. Kutscher, hytwyjaw MyIkVlVhAm (Mahl kîm and its congeners) Leshonenu 26 (1962): R. S. Tomback, A Comparative Semitic Lexicon of the Phoenician and Punic Languages (SBLDS 32; Missoula, Mont.: Scholars Press, 1978), p. 182; and J. Hoftijzer and K. Jongeling, Dictionary of the North-West Semitic Inscriptions (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1995), vol. 2, pp (with extensive bibliography). 14 As first noted by W. von Soden, Review of O. Eissfeldt, Molk als Opferbegriff, TLZ 61 (1936), col. 46.
4 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 24 Rendsburg: Philological Notes from brq be near, approach, hdlowo from hlo go up, etc., so it is not surprising to encounter a sacrificial term from the commonest verb of motion, namely, Klh (Phoenician Kly) go. 15 Furthermore, just as Hebrew has Hiphfiil verbs of the roots brq and hlo, the Phoenician lexicon includes a Yiphfiil form of the root Kly meaning to offer, to sacrifice. 16 This verb is attested in the Karatepe inscription in the expression jbz Klyw shall offer a sacrifice (KAI 26A:II:19; see also 26C:IV:2). 17 Understanding MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7 as sacrifices suits the context of this passage. Elsewhere in the Bible, God grants to the priests the sacrifices that their fellow Israelites will offer, with the same verb Ntn give utilized. The prime passage in the Torah is Num 18:8 20, in which God bestows upon Aaron and his sons the various sacrifices forthcoming from the Israelites, with the verb Ntn used four times (Num 18:8, 11, 12, 19). The summary passage in Num 18:19 reads lea rvcˆy_y nvb wmyîrîy rrvsa MyIv dƒ;qah tom wrv;t lo;k MDlwøo_qDjVl ÔKV ;tia ÔKyRtOnVbIl w ÔKy ndbvl w ÔKVl yi ;tatîn hîwhyal all the sacred donations that the Israelites donate to Yahweh, I give to you and to your sons and to your daughters with you, as an eternal portion. Another relevant text is 1 Sam 2:28, where God reminds Eli, through the mediation of the man of God: lea rvcˆy y nv;b ye ÚvIa_lD ;k_tra ÔKyIbDa tyebvl hînv ;traîw and I gave to your father s house all the offerings of the children of Israel. In similar fashion, see such statements as Josh 13:14, where the offerings are referred to as yehølta hîwh y yeúvia lea rvcˆy the offerings of Yahweh the God of Israel, implying that they are God s offerings granted to the Levites; and Num 28:2 yaúviavl yimvjal yˆnd;b r q_tra yijojyˆn Ajyér my sacrifice, my food, for my offerings, my sweet savour, again with the implication that the offerings are God s to grant to whomever he wishes. In general, Zech 3: Naturally, because the Phoenician form Klm sacrifice includes the same three consonants as the Hebrew form JKRlOm Molech, the former term has received much attention. But to my mind the two words are not related, notwithstanding some opinions to the contrary; thus I opt not to present here another discussion of Molech, especially given the wealth of recent publications devoted to the subject. For discussion, see the two well-known monographs: G. C. Heider, The Cult of Molek: A Reassessment (Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1985); and J. Day, Molech: A God of Human Sacrifice in the Old Testament (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989). More recent treatments include: K. Koch, Molek Astral, in Mythos im Alten Testament und seiner Umwelt: Festschrift für Hans-Peter Müller zum 65. Geburtstag, ed. A. Lange, H. Lichtenberger, and D. Römheld (BZAW 278; Berlin: Walter de Gruyter, 1999), pp ; and H.-P. Müller, Hebräisch JKRlOm und punisch ml( )k(t), in Michael: Historical, Epigraphical and Biblical Studies in Honor of Prof. Michael Heltzer, ed. Y. Avishur and R. Deutsch (Tel-Aviv: Archaeological Center Publications, 1999), pp As first noted by A. Alt, Die phönikischen Inschriften von Karatepe, WO 1 (1949), pp For the references to W. von Soden above (n. 14) and to A. Alt in this note, I am indebted to J. Day, Molech, p See most recently K. L. Younger, The Phoenician Inscription of Azatiwada: An Integrated Reading, JSS 43 (1998): 19 (and pp for an extended discussion of the entire line).
5 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 25 Rendsburg: Philological Notes presents the investiture of Joshua as high priest; 18 accordingly, one also may point to Exodus 29 with its description of the investiture ceremony of Aaron and his sons, replete with detail about the offerings that are to be theirs. 19 In light of the above, I conclude that MyIkVlVhAm is a rare Hebrew word for sacrifices, attested only at Zech 3:7. 20 In addition, I am not convinced that the following phrase hr ;leadh MyîdVmOoDh NyE ;b refers to the divine retinue (see above). It evokes the language of Zech 3:1 5, especially verse 4, where MyîdVmOoDh those standing refers clearly to the members of the heavenly court. But the phrase could just as well refer to the priests who accompany Joshua, the very individuals mentioned in the next verse: NEhO;kAh AoUvwøh y aîn_oamvv ÔKy ndpvl MyIbVvO yah ÔKyRoér w hd ;taa lwødî gah here now, Joshua the high priest, you and your friends who sit before you (Zech 3:8). Read in this fashion, we can marvel at the technique employed by the author of our text; he rehearses the words used earlier in the pericope, but he gives them a different connotation altogether, segueing into what follows. Finally, we may note the presence of alliteration as a factor in the choice of the unique word MyIkVlVhAm in Zech 3:7. As noted in several previous publications, rare Hebrew words often are employed by biblical authors to elicit alliteration. 21 In the present instance, we may observe the same phenomenon. The form MyIkVlVhAm was selected in order to evoke the sounds of the key word JKDaVlAm angel in Zech 3:1, 3, 5, PS 22:17B Ps 22:17b is a half-verse that has received considerable attention of late. No less than three recent articles in JBL by G. Vall, J. Kaltner, and B. A. 18 See most recently M. J. Boda, Oil, Crowns and Thrones: Prophet, Priest and King in Zechariah 1:7 6:15, JHS 3 ( ), available at As the title of his article implies, Boda sees three leadership modes present in these chapters in Zechariah, but he also admits that the greater focus of the vision in Zech 3 is on the renewal of the priestly house in restoration Yehud ( 2.4). 19 I have benefited greatly from an discussion with my friend Victor Hurowitz of Ben-Gurion University (January 2001) concerning these passages, though Prof. Hurowitz does not accede to my interpretation of Zech 3:7. 20 HALAT vol. 2, p. 524 = HALOT vol. 2, p. 552, comes close to this conclusion, but does not reach it completely and in any case does not state so explicitly. At the end of the entry on JKDlßhAm, regarding Zech 3:7, the dictionary simply directs the reader s attention to the entry on JKRlOm (in HALAT vol. 2, p. 560 = HALOT vol. 2, p. 592), where reference is made to W. von Soden s proposal (see above, n. 14) that this word means sacrifice. 21 See, e.g., G. A. Rendsburg and S. L. Rendsburg, Physiological and Philological Notes to Psalm 137, JQR 83 (1993): , especially pp ; G. A. Rendsburg, towyi ÚpVlA Út (Song 4:4), JNSL 20 (1994): 13 19, especially p. 17; and G. A. Rendsburg, Psalm cx 3b, VT 49 (1999): , especially p For the same technique in a well-known Egyptian tale, see G. A. Rendsburg, Literary Devices in the Story of the Shipwrecked Sailor, JAOS 120 (2000):
6 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 26 Rendsburg: Philological Notes Strawn have presented various solutions to the quandary proposed by the words ydl går w yådîy yîrsad ;k, literally, like a lion, my hands and my feet. 22 Strawn in particular advanced the discussion with his drawing our attention to the existence of iconography that might make sense of yîrsad;k in the MT of Ps 22:17b, namely, artwork portraying lions with dismembered human limbs and other body parts, from locales such as Nineveh, Samaria, and elsewhere. In Strawn s words, It makes the MT again possible, even intelligible yîrsad ;k may just mean like a lion after all. I agree with him on this point; I see no reason to emend yîrsad;k as proposed by Vall and Kaltner, among many others. I part company with Strawn, however, when he continued as follows: If so, then the problem in this passage must lie elsewhere, probably in a verb that has dropped out, 23 such as Prf or any semantically similar root. In my view, the lack of a verb in this stich is explicable along the following lines. The first two stichs read: yˆn wpyi;qih MyIoérVm tådso MyIbDlV;k yˆn wbdbvs yi;k for dogs surround me, a pack of evildoers encircles me, after which follows the problematic ydl går w yådîy yîrsad ;k like a lion, my hands and my feet. The absence of a verb indicates the suddenness with which the attack comes. We experience the anguish of the psalmist, he is surrounded by enemies, and suddenly, the pounce, and the immediate cry about hands and feet under attack. The lack of a verb is an example of form following content. The speed with which a lion (or better: lioness) pounces on its prey is indicated by the speed with which the verse reaches its climactic end, passing over the unnecessary verb, in order to highlight the pain of the psalmist as if his very limbs are rent asunder. This would not be the only such instance of form following content in biblical literature. I have pointed to two examples, one in prose and one in poetry, in a previous publication, 24 and I am quite sure that many more instances could be isolated in the Bible with a concerted effort. The example from prose is Judg 18:17, where the expression wjvqdl hd;mdv wad ;b they came there, they took, without the expected conjunctive waw, indicates the speed with which the five men looted Micah s house. The example from poetry is Song 5:6, where the wording rdbdo qamdj yîdwød w my beloved had turned, had gone, again without conjunctive waw, indicates the instantaneous disappearance of the male lover from the female lover s fantasy. 22 G. Vall, Psalm 22:17b: The Old Guess, JBL 116 (1997): 45 56; J. Kaltner, Psalm 22:17b: Second Guessing The Old Guess, JBL 117 (1998): ; and B. A. Strawn, Psalm 22:17b: More Guessing, JBL 119 (2000): For this and the previous two quotes, see B. A. Strawn, Psalm 22:17b: More Guessing, p G. A. Rendsburg, Confused Language as a Deliberate Literary Device in Biblical Hebrew Narrative, JHS 2 ( ): 5.5, available at
7 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 27 Rendsburg: Philological Notes 3. THE NUMERAL 75 To express the numerals 21 99, Hebrew permits both the order units + tens and the order tens + units. 25 When such a numeral occurs attached to so many hundreds (e.g., , , etc.), the order is typically hundreds + tens + units, in an orderly decreasing fashion, for example, Ezra 2:4 MˆyÎnVv w MyIoVbIv twøaem vølvv three hundred seventy and two ; though occasionally one finds the opposite order, that is, an orderly increasing fashion of units + tens + hundreds, for example, Num 3:46 MyIoVbIÚvAh w hdvølvúvah MŷDtaD ;mah w three and seventy and two hundred (the presence of the definite article with each numeral is due to the particular syntax here, since the counted item is definite). The same pattern is true when such numbers accompany thousands: the more common form, with descending order, is exemplified by Ezra 2:65 hdovbiv w MyIvølVv twøaem vølvv MyIpDlSa taovbiv seven thousand three hundred thirty and seven ; while the less common form, with ascending order, is exemplified by Num 3:50 PRlRaÎw twøaem vølvv w MyIÚvIv w hdúvimsj five and sixty and three hundred and a thousand. 26 Divergences from these norms, that is, with neither strictly descending or ascending order, are rare. The only examples that I have been able to identify, with the order (thousands +) hundreds + units + tens, are the following: 27 Exod 38:25 MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsjåw twøaem oabvv w PRlRa a thousand and seven hundred and five and seventy Exod 38:28 MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsjåw twøae;mah oabvv w PRlRaDh a thousand and seven hundred and five and seventy Num 31:37 MyIoVbIv w vemdj twøaem vev six hundred five and seventy 1 Kgs 20:15 MyIvølVv w MˆyÅnVv MˆyAtaDm two hundred two and thirty 25 B. K. Waltke and M. O Connor, An Introduction to Biblical Hebrew Syntax (Winona Lake, Ind.: Eisenbrauns, 1990), pp B. K. Waltke and M. O Connor, An Introduction, p Incidentally, one should correct the authors reference regarding Num 3:43 to myriads thousands units decimals hundreds since myriads do not occur in the numeral as presented in this verse. 27 I gratefully acknowledge the assistance of several Miqra subscribers who responded to the query that I posted on said listserv. Among these Matthew Anstey, a graduate student at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, deserves special mention for having provided the most detailed response. In addition to the examples listed below, I mention here Num 3:43 which is atypical in a number of ways, most significantly in its order thousands + units + tens + hundreds.
8 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 28 Rendsburg: Philological Notes Ezra 2:5 MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsj twøaem oabvv seven hundred five and seventy One is immediately struck by the fact that four of these five examples include the number 75 (for 1 Kgs 20:15, see below, section 4). This suggests that this numeral operates in a unique fashion in biblical Hebrew, a point which receives some confirmation from the lack of any counter examples. That is to say, there is not a single example in the Bible of so many hundreds followed by MyIoVbIv and then either vemdj or hdúvimßj. A search for other instances of 75 in the Bible, not necessarily in a position following the hundreds place, but in any context, yields one additional example: Esth 9:16 PRlDa MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsj five and seventy thousand Here one expects the reverse order PRlDa hd ÚvImSjAw MyIoVbIv* seventy and five thousand. I make this claim based on a survey of all instances of thousands counted in the Bible. A clear pattern emerges. The census figures in Numbers 1 and Numbers 26 consistently use the formula units + tens when counting thousands; and the same holds true for Ezekiel (45:1, 3, 5, 6; 48:8, 9, 10 [2x], 13 [2x], 15, 20 [2x], 21 [2x]). But in narrative texts, the clear preference is for the formula tens + units when counting thousands, as the following list indicates: Judg 7:3; 12:6; 20:15, 35, 46; 2 Sam 8:5; 1 Kgs 8:63; 20:30; 1 Chr 5:18; 7:2, 4, 5, 7, 40; 12:34, 35; 18:5; 23:3, 4; 27:1, 2, 4, 5, 7 15 [9x]; 2 Chr 7:5 (and see also 2 Kgs 19:35 = Isa 37:36). I admit that many of these passages from Chronicles are not true narrative texts, but the examples from the Former Prophets show clearly that the order tens + units is the preferred method of counting thousands. The only counter examples that I have been able to identify are Judg 20:21 and 1 Chr 19:7, along with the aforecited Esth 9:16. In light of this pattern, as noted above, one would expect PRlDa hdúvimsjaw MyIoVbIv* seventy and five thousand in Esth 9:16, but such does not occur; rather we find PRlDa MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsj five and seventy thousand. Notwithstanding the two additional counter examples, I conclude that the presence of the number 75 here elicits the atypical order There are other examples where 75 appears in the text, though in these cases, the components 70 and 5 are separated by a repetition of the item counted, so I do not consider them germane to our discussion. The passages are Gen 12:4; Gen 25:7; Num 31:32. The first of these actually has the order of units + tens, hîndv MyIoVbIv w MyˆnDv vemdj_nr ;b five years and seventy years old, but I would not ascribe any relevance to this, especially as this formulation continues the pattern of Gen 11:32.
9 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 29 Rendsburg: Philological Notes The conclusion to be drawn is that the numeral 75 in ancient Hebrew operated in a unique fashion, as MyIoVbIv w hdúvimsj or MyIoVbIv w vemdj (note Num 31:37 above for the feminine form), and never in the reverse order MyIoVbIv* hd ÚvImSjAw or vemdj w MyIoVbIv*. Why this is so I cannot determine. But we all know of languages with unusual specific numerals, the most familiar being French quatre-vingt A natural question to ask is whether closely related West Semitic languages also formed the numeral 75 in such manner. Unfortunately, however, the evidence is meager, and we can draw no conclusion. One instance of 75 is attested in Ugaritic, but alas this sole attestation is written in logographic form (CAT 4.610:12). 30 In ancient Aramaic, we also have one occurrence of 75, in the expected form, specifically, as part of the numeral 275 in TAD A6.2:15 (= Cowley 26:15) hcmjw NobC Nytam. 31 It is possible that the unusual nature of 75 was limited to Hebrew, in which case we may note the parallel situation in the Romance languages. Only French expresses 80 in the aforementioned atypical fashion; the other Romance languages have the expected forms (Spanish ochenta, Portuguese oitenta, Italian ottanta, Romanian optzeci) KGS 20:15 MyIvølVv w MŷÅnVv MˆyAtaDm TWO HUNDRED TWO AND THIRTY The above discussion concerning the numeral 75 leads naturally to our next question: so why is 1 Kgs 20:15 worded as MyIvølVv w MˆyÅnVv MŷAtaDm two hundred two and thirty? This clearly is an exceptional formulation. The most likely factor is the presence of the number MŷÅnVv w MyIvølVv thirty and two in 1 Kgs 20:1 and 16 (see also 1 Kgs 22:31), referring to the number of kings who aided Ben-Hadad in his campaign against Israel. Apparently, the author of Kings, or his underlying source, wished to distinguish the two 32 s, and therefore he utilized the unusual order in fact, cases with 75 aside, a uniquely unusual order in presenting the number of Israelite officers mustered. 29 Incidentally, this system is operative in Libyco-Berber throughout, for expressing the numbers 20 through 100; cf. E. Lipiński, Semitic Languages: Outline of a Comparative Grammar (OLA 80; Leuven: Peeters, 1997), pp For an oddity within Semitic, note that only Gefiez lacks a specific word for thousand, and instead uses ašartū m t, literally ten hundreds (see E. Lipiński, Semitic Languages, pp , 290). 30 See the comprehensive list of attestations of šbfim in J.-L. Cunchillos and J.-P. Vita, Concordancia de Palabras Ugaríticas (Banco de Datos Filológicos Semíticos Noroccidentales; Madrid: Institución Fernando el Católico, 1995), vol. 2, pp See T. Muraoka and B. Porten, A Grammar of Egyptian Aramaic (HdO; Leiden: Brill, 1998), p. 89.
10 Hebrew Studies 43 (2002) 30 Rendsburg: Philological Notes I admit that it would have made more sense for 32 in 1 Kgs 20:1 and 16 to be written as MyIvølVv w MˆyÅnVv*, especially since this word order was available to the author of Kings (or his source), thus allowing the use of MˆyÅnVv w MyIvølVv MˆyAtaDm* for 232 in 1 Kgs 20:15, but such was not done. My attempt at an explanation is based on the facts on the ground, not on any posited alternatives. 5. A FURTHER NOTE ON t wr RUTH In the first section of the first article in this series, I dealt with the personal name t wr Ruth. 32 My main point was to demonstrate how this name could be derived from the root hwr refresh. In reviewing alternative understandings of the name, I noted E. A. Knauf s suggestion that t wr be related to the term tyr attested in Mesha Stele line 12, apparently to be understood as offering. This short addendum is merely to call attention to a new reading of the word in question by Andre Lemaire, based on his examination of the squeeze of the Mesha Stele housed at the Louvre. According to Lemaire, the word tyr does not occur, but rather the correct reading is tyh, that is, the third feminine singular form of the suffix conjugation of the verb hyh be. 33 If Lemaire is correct, and at this point all scholars should rely on his expertise in this matter, then the existence of the word tyr evaporates and Knauf s argument is greatly weakened. 32 G. A. Rendsburg, Hebrew Philological Notes (I), HS 40 (1999): As far as I know, Lemaire has not published this specific observation yet. See, however, A. F. Rainey, Syntax, Hermeneutics and History, IEJ 48 (1998): 244 and n. 21, where this information is conveyed. On the other hand, as Rainey noted, Lemaire took this new reading into account in his translation of the Mesha Stele in A. Lemaire, House of David Restored in Moabite Inscription, BAR 20/3 (May June 1994): 33, line 12 in the translation (where, as the title of this article indicates, his main point was something much more significant).
11 NOTE TO READER Due to a problem with new software introduced by Hebrew Studies midway through the production of vol. 43 (2002), a reformatting of my article after I read proofs created all sorts of difficulties with the Hebrew text. Every instance of Hebrew wordwrap appears incorrectly, and even in other places the Hebrew text is out-of-order. This is especially problematic in sections 3 and 4 of the present article, in which I discuss the order of items within the syntax of the higher numerals. Hopefully, the presence of English translations throughout will guide the reader on the proper order of the Hebrew text. In addition, note one mistake for which I am responsible: on p. 25, the first word in the translation of Zech 3:8 should be hear, and not here. Mea culpa.